The Ghana COCOBOD has defended its claim that it has retrieved all outstanding debts owed it by one of its Licensed Buying Companies (LBC), Akuafo Adamfo.
COCOBOD first made the claim in response to queries from the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament.
But the company maintains that the guarantees provided by local banks in granting credit to its buyers, have helped it to retrieve its debts.
Speaking on the Citi Breakfast Show on Tuesday, the Public Affairs Manager of COCOBOD, Noah Amenyah further stated that payments were concluded in the 2014/2015 crop season.
“We get bank guarantees before we give out the seed funds and this is what exactly that Akuafo Adamfo did and since they could not pay their debts, COCOBOD relied on the bank guarantees hence all the debts by Akuafo Adamfo have totally been retrieved,” he stated.
Akuafo Adamfo forms of the 32 registered LBCs at the COCOBOD.
However it was not engaged in the 2015/2016 crop season over concerns that it breached the conditions under the internal marketing of cocoa as they could not purchase from the seed funds they were granted.
The Finatrade Group of companies, including AkuafoAdamfo owes over twenty banks to the tune of more than one billion cedis.
A development which is also crippling the operations of the banks affected.
Prolonged harmattan impact light crop season
Meanwhile the Ghana Cocoa Board has blamed this year’s prolonged harmattan weather condition for its inability to supply enough quantities of light crop cocoa beans in the 2015/2016 crop season.
It follows concerns by some European companies that they may be forced to cut down on importing cocoa beans from Ghana and Cote D’Ivoire over concerns of low cocoa beans.
The severe weather condition is also said to have led to a decline in the percentage of light crop by almost half; from 15 percent to 8 percent.
But Mr. Amenyah is however optimistic that the onset of the rains should enable COCOBOD meet the quality of cocoa beans expected from its buyers in the 2015/2016 crop season.
“Largely the beans sizes in Ghana were larger than those of Cote D’Ivoire the only thing we are seeing this month is that because of the long drought the beans sizes are turning smaller at the tail end of the 2015/2016 light crop season. But we hope that as the rains have set in about two months ago, the main crop will rather have bigger beans,” Mr. Amenyah indicated.
By: Pius Amihere Eduku/citibusinessnews.com/Ghana